Shifting regulation, increased enforcement and the adoption of new technologies are changing the landscape of business risk — and, according to 15th EY Global Fraud Survey 2018 (pdf) , a significant level of unethical conduct remains.
Our survey respondents — 2,550 executives from 55 countries and territories — see fraud and corruption among the greatest risks to their business. Although we found that many businesses have reached a certain level of maturity in their compliance programs, we also see a mismatch between awareness and employee behavior — and we continue to see ethical failures, business losses and consequent reputational damage.
The survey results suggest that the benefits of demonstrating organizational integrity go beyond the avoidance of penalties and can actually improve business performance. This makes sense: doing the wrong thing is a lost opportunity to do the right thing.
Meanwhile, advances in technology, — particularly in artificial intelligence, machine learning and automation — can be used to transform legal and compliance functions. What is the new role of the compliance officer when monitoring is performed by data analytics and real time training is delivered by artificially intelligent robots?
Our survey raises challenging questions for boards that should drive better conversations around fraud, corruption and integrity more broadly.